Live Green and Earn Points


No-Cost Home Improvements

By Cara Terreri |

Learn how to decorate your home by reusing and repurposing what you already have — and do it without spending a dime.

UPDATED: 03/16/11 | Originally Published: 10/06/09

Every few months, I find a particular area in my house that I become bored with or annoyed with. I feel the urgent need to change it up, dress it up or fix it up. Problem is, we're almost always on a tight budget, and well, I'm also just a wee bit cheap. So, instead of going to the store, I go "shopping" in my house.

Here are a few of the items that I've repurposed for other decorative and functional uses — maybe some can inspire you, too:
• colorful, vintage flower pot to hold feminine items on my bathroom shelf

• large glass vase to hold magazines in our guest bathroom

• vintage wooden airplane propeller hanging on the wall in our kids' playroom

• stylish black stetson hanging on the wall in our bedroom

• a vintage window pane that will eventually frame a picture in one of my bathrooms

• Baskets, baskets, baskets! We use a basket to hold bread in the kitchen; two handled baskets sit on the bottom of our staircase to hold items that need to be taken upstairs; a labeled basket is assigned to each person in our family in the entryway of our house to hold keys, bags, lunchboxes, sunglasses, etc; my husband and I each have our own basket on the counter of our bathroom to hold our respective toiletries.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out these additional ideas for more repurposed home decorating:
• old and vintage maps as wall art, from Poetic Home

• old drawers turned into mobile gardening boxes

• transform drawers into shelves like Trash to Treasure does

• ideas for repurposing an old dresser, leather or vintage fabric from Home Made Simple

• Like Merchant Ships uses what she has to turn a punch bowl into a planter, use a curtain panel to make a table cloth, or use an old chair as a stereo and ipod stand

• Small Notebook repurposed a bar in her new home into a kid's closet

What have you repurposed as home decor? Share your ideas below!

Share with Your Friends & Family
  • Elaine F. 7 years ago
    good ideas.
  • 8 years ago
    Four years ago I was cleaning out old mail and old greeting cards that had been sent to me through the years, valentine cards, birthday, and mothers day cards and I thought they were too pretty to throw away so I saved them again. Like a year later I found the cards again and I started cutting out hearts like I used to when I was a kid. That was the beginning of my handcrafted Valentine cards. After a couple of years I've gotton pretty good. I send them out to family and friends and they love them. I've also sold several due to the encouragement of my friends and family.
  • 8 years ago
    get 1/2 used paint at county hazard waste center
  • 8 years ago
    Great site.I am really into recycling.Someone dumped a hot tub in the alley behind our house.Hubby dragged it to our yard.Now it's a planter.We have real wildflowers and an old tree stump in it.I really like it.
  • 9 years ago
    We use all the containers from yogut for plant starter pots, can be reused over and over, we also use the newspapers to cover the barn walls as insulation/
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